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Lyon & Turnbull, who last week announced January to December sales figures of £6.2m, told ATG they completed more than 100 jobs South of the Border in 2005 (many of them in the South East) – a sufficient springboard for premises in SW1. The new office, scheduled to be up and running by the end of February, is situated on the third floor of a neoclassical block at number 11, Pall Mall. The Cyprus Turkish Airlines have the street-level offices.

Paul Roberts, vice president of L&T, said the 1200 sq ft space would be used for displaying forthcoming auction highlights to clients as well as a place for entertaining and receiving merchandise for sale in Edinburgh. There are, he said, no immediate plans to conduct sales in the capital but did not rule out the possibility.

Heading up the London office is James James-Crook, a former picture specialist and director of overseas operations at Phillips. He joined L&T part-time in September 2003 but will now take on the new task full time and be based in Pall Mall.

The company are also hoping to make two new appointments: a Contemporary art specialist and, following the departure of Sebastian Pryke to Hiscox insurers, a new head of furniture.